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7 in 10 homeowners do not know the true value of their home

Our home is often our greatest asset, and for many of us it makes sense to capitalise on that investment. But a significant number of homeowners in the UK are wealthier than they realise because they are underestimating the value of their property, a new survey has revealed[1].

The survey asked 2,000 UK homeowners about their experiences of receiving a property valuation from an estate agent in the last three years. Of those surveyed, 3 in 10 reported that the valuation was roughly equal to their expectation of their home’s value.

Underestimated home’s values

A smaller number (25%) of respondents said they had overestimated their home’s value. But the largest group (45%) had undervalued their property. People in this group discovered that it was worth more, often far more, than they realised.

Of the 45% of respondents who had underestimated their home’s value, the average amount they underestimated by was £46,305. Upon discovering the true value of their property, many of these homeowners were able to move to a larger property than they thought they could afford. In some cases, they were able to retire early.

Even small changes can add value

A significant number of the homeowners surveyed (10%), mostly located in London and the southeast, reported that their estate agent valuation was £100,000 or more higher than they expected. If the survey is an accurate representation of all UK homeowners, that could mean that more than 1 million homes carry over £100,000 in hidden equity, which could be life-changing for the people living in them.

If you’ve made significant improvements to your home over the years, it’s likely that you’ve added to its value. Extensions, loft conversions and basement conversions tend to add the most value, but new kitchens and bathrooms also contribute. Even small changes, like sprucing up your home’s exterior to give it more kerb appeal, can add value.

Create an excellent first impression

The average home prices in your area may also have increased since you bought your home, so looking at similar properties for sale in your area could give you a more accurate idea of your home’s value. Getting an estate agent’s valuation is a way to find out whether you have hidden equity, and then to make a decision about how to capitalise on it.

Boosting your home’s kerb appeal is a really important part of preparing to sell. There are lots of relatively simple ways to ensure your property gives an excellent first impression to potential buyers and to passers-by, while also boosting its value. Even straightforward maintenance and tidying can have a big impact on viewers, as well as saving you money through the prevention of long-term problems.

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Source data:

[1] https://www.zoopla.co.uk/discover/property-news/how-much-is-my-house-worth-hidden-equity/